Kraft Heinz is ready to move beyond ‘good’ to ‘great,’ which ‘is a very different game’

“Before we were on the bottom and our expectation was just to grow, to start growing,”​ Carlos Abrams-Rivera, executive vice president and president of Kraft Heinz’s North America Zone, said last week at Barclays Global Consumer Staples Conference in Boston. But now, he added, “we are no longer at the bottom. I think we are good now. And so, we have now an ambition to become great. And that is a very different game.”

And it is one the company plans to win with its strategic agile@scale initiative, in which the company plans to leverage partnerships with tech giants and innovators to reframe its size from a burden to an asset with significant capabilities at scale and financial flexibility to acquire what else it needs to level-up.

This requires a shift in mindset, which Patricio acknowledged is “more intangible”​ and difficult to manage but something he and other leaders are doing through weekly meetings with talent that foster personal connections and a sense of teamwork and also provide him with a “pulse on how the company is growing and moving.”

For example, he said, during a recent meeting with top talent he received “super energized”​ answers to his question about what excites them and what they are doing.

“They were talking a very different language,”​ from three years ago “with a growth mindset,”​ that allowed them to look beyond traditional plays into new areas of growth, such as cream cheese beyond cheesecake and bagels and how to take a frozen food Mexican brand into new categories.



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